Home » Repair Issues affecting Luzerne County Courthouse Elevators
High-rise public buildings exist by the grace of elevators. However, as with all mechanical devices, regular and continuous use leads to wear and tear. Periodic upgrades and maintenance is necessary to reduce downtime and extend the lifespan of the accessibility device. This is all the more important in public buildings which have a lot of traffic on a daily basis.
According to a recent report, while efforts have been made to upgrade the two aging courthouse elevators in Luzerne County, one in another county building has stopped working properly. That lift functioning has been affected in the property’s three-story unit (housing Children and Youth and Mental Health offices), posing significant issues for deliveries and forcing employees to make alternate arrangements for clients who are unable to use the stairs.
According to County Operational Services Division Head, “One of the two elevators in the county-owned human services building on Pennsylvania Avenue in Wilkes-Barre has been out of order for weeks”.
With the elevator repair contract being finalized, it was expected that the device would become operational in a week, the report stated.
The idea to replace the two 40-year-old lift system at the county courthouse had been there for years as part of the ongoing restoration process of the historic structure. However, the project became a high priority one when both the devices failed to function for several hours last year. During this breakdown, inmates had to be unshackled and escorted up the stairs to the courtrooms on the second and third floors. In addition, court officials appointed workers at both courthouse entrances in order to help jurors or others attending the court proceedings, in case they experienced difficulty in climbing stairs.
The county courthouse officials said that the refurbishment process of both the accessibility devices is expected to be completed within a year and will be timed to ensure that at least one lift is operational at all times. However, the fact that only one lift is operational is worrying some employees as both the devices were heavily used by large number of people. The old court house building also has high ceilings with more steps between the floors.
54 Thompson Street, 2nd Floor
New York, NY 10012